HC Declines Stay, To Test Legality Of Ban Order

SRINAGAR — The Jammu and Kashmir high court on Tuesday declined “a blanket stay” on government order imposing restrictions on movement of the people on highway for two days on Sunday and Wednesday and observed that it would test safety, security and legality of the April 3 order by the state’s home department.

Arraying Defence Ministry and Ministry of Transport apart from State authorities, a division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Tashi Rabstan sought counter affidavit from both central as well as state Government on the issue within 10 days period.

The Court was hearing a bunch of petitions filed various politicians including National Conference General Secretary Ali Mohammad Sagar, PDP senior leader Naeem Akhter and IAS topper turned politician Shah Faisal and others.

Meanwhile, senior additional advocate general B A Dar said that they placed before the court minutes of meeting headed by divisional Commissioner Kashmir and the order passed today in light of these minutes.

He informed the court that in these minutes of meeting and the order passed today, care has been taken of various sections of movement on highway during two dedicated days for movement of convoy.

As per the fresh order, medical prescriptions shall be treated as “travel passes” on the national highway while advocate too have been exempted from the purview of the ban. 

“All medical emergencies  shall be kept beyond the restrictions enumerated in the above-mentioned order and the medical prescriptions shall be treated as travel passes by the implementing agencies,” reads an order issued by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir on Tuesday about “smooth implementation” of an government order  issued on April 3 regarding “regulation of civil traffic during movement of security forces convoys on the National Highways.”

According to the order issued on Tuesday, advocates and lawyers of High Court and other courts shall also be exempted from the restrictions given in the order and identity cards of the advocates shall be treated as travel passes by the concerned.

Magistrates and police personal present at all the critical crossing points intersections of the NH 1A shall ensure that the commuters are allowed to pass the National Highway in a hassle-free manner, the order says.

As per minuses of the meeting, every Deputy Commissioner shall nominate a Nodal Officer at the District level whose number shall be duly publicized who will issue travel passes after making sufficient verification. “Travel Passes shall be issued in case there are any requirements to movement for any emergency. However, in case of medical emergencies the local traffic carrying patients with proper medical prescriptions should be allowed. Also in case of employees, their identity cards will be treated as travel pass,” reads the minutes of meeting. Deputy Commissioners shall also prepare a list of schools which are located alongside Highway and issue necessary instructions to Zonal Magistrates/Police Officers to allow the school buses ferrying students having proper I-Cards on Highway. “The students who are scheduled to appear in the examinations on the days or restriction, they should be allowed to travel on Highway such after checking proper and I-Cards should be treated as their travel passes.”   



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